MANILA (Mabuhay) — The Moro National Liberal Front (MNLF)’s plan to revive its petition seeking the independence of Mindanao will not prosper since the United Nations (UN) recognizes the government’s efforts in the peace process, Presidential peace process adviser Teresita Deles said Tuesday.
Deles said UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the signing of the last annex to the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro (FAB) and even congratulated the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) for “their perseverance, courage and commitment in having reached this important milestone in the peace process.”
“I think the statement speaks for itself as to how the UN regards how the government is addressing the situation in southern [Philippines],” she said.
She issued the statement after MNLF spokesman Rev. Absalom Cerveza said they plan to revive their petition before the UN seeking the independence of Mindanao, claiming the government had abrogated the 1996 peace agreement it had signed with them.
Deles, however, said the UN does not only recognize the FAB and its annexes but its agencies have also been providing “support” to the GPH-MILF peace process.
So instead of reviving their petition, she said the MNLF should just work with them to come up with the “best” law possible for the Bangsamoro people.
“Our call and the cry of all people of good will is for all Bangsamoro stakeholders, including the MNLF, to work together to come up with the best law possible for the autonomous region and its people,” she said.
A Bangsamoro Transition Commission shall be in charge of drafting the Bangsamoro Basic Law, which will use the annexes as guide. It is expected to result in a Bangsamoro Political Entity that will replace the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).
Government peace panel chair Miriam Coronel-Ferrer said they hope to present the Bangsamoro Basic Law to Congress by early 2014.
But Deles said this does not mean they are backing out of the tripartite review of the implementation of the 1996 peace pact with the MNLF. (MNS)